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No staff room

Discussion in 'Supply teaching' started by tackles, Jan 26, 2016.

  1. tackles

    tackles Occasional commenter

    Had a day in a new academy today. Mostly ok (no really awful kids) until I tried to find the staff room to have lunch...

    30 min lunch break, spent 10 mins looking for staff room, until someone told me there wasn't one! The teachers aren't allowed to eat in the classrooms and I didn't fancy losing another 10 mins of my break looking for the dining hall, so I went and sat in the car. Thank goodness I had sandwiches with me and not a pot noodle!

    How common is this no staff room thing? It's the first one I've come across.
     
  2. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    It was a few years back when I heard it was no longer obligatory to provide a staffroom. Don't know how many schools operate the system, perhaps apart from new school built since?

    Mind you in many secondaries staff often had their own 'refreshments' and leisure facilities (sometimes just cupboards) though I found those less common in Primaries. Mind you I know staffrooms completely devoid of 'teaching staff' other than admin / TAs as staff were often in their rooms marking/ preparing /hearing readerss etc.
     
    lizziescat likes this.
  3. les25paul

    les25paul Star commenter

    Its quite common in some of the new "trendy builds". The objective is to stop staff talking to each other,

    Some even have canteens on a cashless system, if you don't have a card then you cannot get a meal or drink all day. They are not meant to be visitor friendly but they are easy to administer for the academy.

    You can always turn down any future work at the place if it doesn't fit your needs.
     
  4. Jolly_Roger1

    Jolly_Roger1 Star commenter

    When our school 'went academy', a new computer room was created by partitioning off most of the old staff room, leaving with us with an 'L - shaped' room that reminded me of the insides of two, small doubler-decker buses parked at right angles to each other. As it had no electric sockets, you couldn't even boil a kettle.

    The canteen worked on a finger-print recognition system for payment, which as the fellow how turned up to register all our finger prints admitted, didn't work very well on 'older fingers'. New staff had problems, as nobody in the school could get the system to read and accept new prints.
     
  5. pepper5

    pepper5 Star commenter

    That sounds rather misersble- eating sandwiches in a car on a cold day in February.
    Some schools that I go to in addition to having comfortable staff rooms supply cake and fruit on certain days. That is rather nice.
     
    emmalcm1 and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  6. watermelongirl65

    watermelongirl65 New commenter

    My first day in a staff room-less academy too. I was directed to the canteen only to be confronted with wall to wall students. I asked a member of staff on duty if there was an area set aside for the teachers and he replied in a voice which could put WWI propagandists to shame, " You can sit with the students. That's what we do!" I looked around the canteen and there was not another member of staff to be seen. Staff sit with students in the canteen? Yeah, right.
     
  7. twigs74

    twigs74 New commenter

    Sadly my last school decided to get rid of the staffroom when the new build was being finished. Nowhere for staff to meet up during lunch or morning break, so most stayed in their classrooms.

    The same applied at a school I worked in one day last week - nice pupils, lovely facilities, but no staffroom. And a cashless system which meant I couldn't use it, so I was told anyway.

    So I stayed in the classroom and made a bottle of water last all day and ate my bodyweight in food upon my return home.
     
  8. historygrump

    historygrump Star commenter Forum guide

    I know of a newly built school in which part of the dinning area is taped off, part is for the teachers and the rest is for student's to use, again one of my favourite schools have a small staff area, but kids can come in and use it, because part of the area is also an area for teaching as well, so the teachers generally do not use it. So you find that departmental areas are closed to student's at dinners and breaks, so the teachers can have their dinners and breaks within their departmental areas. The problem is as I pointed out there seems little opportunity for inter-action between different departmental staff to discuss issues, but the reply is we use emails, but personally, I do not think this is helpful. In that if a teacher as a problem with a student, then how do they know that any other teacher as had similar problems with the same student? In the old days you mentioned it in the staffroom and others could discuss any issues they had to help deal with the issue.
     
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  9. Jolly_Roger1

    Jolly_Roger1 Star commenter

    @historygrump: At the risk being thought cynical, or even a bit paranoid, the demise of staff rooms and the ability of staff to meet and discuss issues with each other does have a negative effect on any staff solidarity, which might be thought a useful, management ploy.
     
    HelenREMfan and Lara mfl 05 like this.
  10. Deirds

    Deirds Senior commenter

    My favourite school is a newish building (about 4 years?).

    It actually works as a building. And there is a lovely staff room. So it can be done.

    Also at the risk of sounding cynical.... I think some school managers do not think teachers' welfare matters at all. I've been in one school where pupils were surveyed to come up with school rules for staff. I met one lady on a course who worked in a school built almost entirely of glass with no staff area. She said the only place she could go and have a good cry was the toilet...

    If teachers treated pupils the way some (hopefully still a minority) of senior staff treat teachers their career would be be very short indeed.
     
    emmalcm1 likes this.
  11. WillyDjangoReinhardt

    WillyDjangoReinhardt Occasional commenter

    Almost every school I go to nowadays has cashless canteen.
     
  12. clairejeffries2015

    clairejeffries2015 New commenter

    I'm not sure if this is going to work...
     
  13. PaulDG

    PaulDG Occasional commenter

    No, I don't believe that's the objective.

    It's far more likely the objectives are a combination of 'how to manage the space so as to cram as many kids into the available land as possible' and Guardian reading architects and decision makers at the local authority wanting a school 'where there are no artificial barriers between the teachers and the learners'.

    The fact that staff can no longer gather together and plot the revolution is an unintended bonus.
     
  14. neddyfonk

    neddyfonk Lead commenter

    The 'standard' plans on gov website for new schools have no storage space, no room for expansion and minimum sized classrooms for 28 pupils. As a governor I would reject such plans and specify what the new build should have before plans are drawn up.
     
    Lara mfl 05 likes this.
  15. ChrisH77

    ChrisH77 New commenter

    An academy I occasionally get sent to:
    No staff room.
    No staff toilets.

    Isn't that a safeguarding issue?
     
  16. tackles

    tackles Occasional commenter

    No staff toilets? Good grief!
    Common sense seems to have been sacrificed here.

    I've come across the cashless system a lot, but the lack of staff room was new. I usually take a sandwich or salad when I have an advance booking, or a pot noodle when it's a last minute thing.

    I honestly don't know if I'd have been able to get some hot water in the dining hall, but with cashless catering & queuing up with the kids, I don't think I'd have had time to eat a pot noodle. No idea how staff cope there every day.

    Sitting in the car wasn't so bad - radio on, heater on, no noisy kids...

    We need a break from the kids.
    They need a break from us.
     
  17. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Absolutely! ;)
     
  18. Yoda-

    Yoda- Lead commenter

    I think we know where the staff were on any priority list, for a new build school.

    Makes me think of.... escape3.jpg
     
    emmalcm1 likes this.
  19. emmalcm1

    emmalcm1 Established commenter

    A school I go to recently moved the staff room to a very small classroom with rock hard chairs and graffiti on the walls. It was also suggested at one stage that people should not be sitting in the staff room during morning break because it is time that the school are paying for.

    Something I think a lot of schools seem to be forgetting is that happy staff are generally more productive staff. Sometimes, especially in very tough schools, friendships with other members of staff who can offer a sympathetic ear are all that help people get through the day.
     
  20. Lara mfl 05

    Lara mfl 05 Star commenter

    Absolutely! Collegial support is so often the only thing that keeps many teachers going.
     
    emmalcm1 likes this.

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